HTC Just Put the Facebook Phone on Its Dollar Menu, and That's Bad News

The Atlantic Wire
HTC Just Put the Facebook Phone on Its Dollar Menu, and That's Bad News
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HTC Just Put the Facebook Phone on Its Dollar Menu, and That's Bad News

It's never a good sign when a cellphone company lowers the price of a cellphone so soon after its release, which makes the new, very low $0.99 price of HTC's so-called Facebook phone so very foreboding. It's only been a little over the month since the HTC One's debut at $99 — with a two-year AT&T contract. The new 99-percent discount suggests (or perhaps even confirms) that the social-media centric gadget, hyped by Mark Zuckerberg himself as an exclusive partnership in a rollout of his Facebook-first operating system, isn't selling too well. After all, Nokia slashed its Lumia 900 in half after a little over three months of struggling sales, and it looks like a similar thing may be happening to HTC, despite the Facebook marketing surge — overcrowded airplanes and all. One analyst said his local AT&T store had sold zero Facebook phones. And an Examiner survey of 20 stores found that the HTC One was selling "well," but not as well as the Samsung Galaxy S IV.

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It's not too surprising the HTC One hasn't exactly flown off shelves, and not just because it's a mid-level phone in a Galaxy and iPhone universe. Reviewers found the first Facebook phone addictive but refused to recommend it to anyone who wasn't a Facebook "addict," whatever that means. I liked the phone itself after trying it for a week, just not the Facebook-as-a-home-screen part of it. Plus, the best part of Facebook's new mobile OS — Chat Heads — is available through the social network's Messenger app, on all Android phones, without having to buy a brand-new device. Perhaps there just aren't that many actual Facebook addicts out there? Or maybe they're all so cheap (read: young) that a price cut can lure them in.

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